In 2012 Hard Rock International partnered with ReverbNation—the leading online marketing services company for musicians—to help boost the Facebook fan base for each of it’s Café’s respective Facebook pages. The plan: • Capitalize on bands’ local fans to grow the venues’ Facebook Pages. • Leverage Facebook’s social reach on a global scale to generate excitement and powerful fan engagement in an epic battle of the bands contest. • Engage the independent music community with a high-stakes competition. To reach those goals, Hard Rock and ReverbNation joined powers to create the world’s largest Battle of the Bands: Hard Rock Rising. The contest would ultimately send one band to Hyde Park, London for the ultimate rock star treatment—including a spot on the bill at the Hard Rock Calling 2012 music festival to open for headliner Bruce Springsteen! ReverbNation was able to integrate the Hard Rock Rising competition into Facebook like never before, tapping into their 2 million + community of musicians to promote the contest and simplify the submission process. The results? • The competition pulled off the largest, global battle of the bands, engaging fan communities of 12,000 independent artists worldwide. • It added 950,000 new fans across participating Hard Rock Cafes’ Facebook pages, a 24% increase. • By partnering with ReverbNation, Hard Rock Rising band submissions increased by a striking 1400% and consumer votes by 600% from the previous year’s contest. • The competition generated over 240,000 shares of the Facebook application, proving the power and reach of a passionate social media community looking to discover new music and interact with artists. Bands flooded the gates to participate, signing up through ReverbNation and using Facebook to maximize their exposure. ReverbNation developed the leaderboard-style contest application, hosted on the 86 participating Hard Rock Café’s Facebook pages, allowing fans to see photos and stream songs from participating artists. First-round winners were determined by fan downloads: one download equaled one vote. Participants were also required to like the Page, thus growing the online fan bases for each local Hard Rock Cafe. Then it moved to the live stage. Over 850 semi-finalists trucked in to Hard Rock locations around the world to perform and face judging from their peers to earn a spot in the Top 10. Finalists would then battle it out online in a global voting phase to gain the most votes and earn their ticket to London. Hard Rock and ReverbNation capitalized on the reach of Facebook to catapult the contest into the global sphere. Share Buttons let fans spread the word on their timelines. Each global artist received banners that were directly built into their ReverbNation widgets, artist profile, band profile app, and fan email template; the banners redirected fans to the Facebook app and automatically put their song at the top. The Top 10 were then judged by a celebrity panel, although judging was influenced by fan votes and sharing activity. ReverbNation and Hard Rock Rising gave musicians worldwide a platform to share their music with communities they may never have reached before. Through the power of Facebook, the competition provided artists with the toolsets to continue sharing, growing, and striving for greatness. Rock on.
For more information and screenshots of Hard Rock Rising: http://blog.reverbnation.com/hardrockrising/
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